Premier League Expected Goals (xG) – Who Were the Winners and Losers Last Season?

We all know that the final score of a match doesn’t necessarily reflect what happened in the actual game. Football, at times, can be a game of chance, and it’s entirely possible that a team who completely dominated a match end up losing 1-0. I’m sure you can all think of examples of past occurrences where exactly that has happened.

Enter: Expected goals.

Expected goals simply assigns a percentage to each shot of becoming a goal. It crunches the numbers from thousands of historical shots and filters them using a wide array of variables such as distance to goal, type of shot, number of defenders nearby and more. A shot with an expected goal (xG) of 0.15, for example, should be scored 15% of the time. Calculating this for every shot in a match gives an overall Expected Goals total, which can then be translated across to Expected Points and eventually into an entire league table.

Last season saw a significant rise in the attention played to this metric. Sky Sports and BT Sport both started tracking the data and bringing it to your TV screens occasionally, but we’re going one step further and tracking it for every game throughout the season, trying to spot future trends and gaps in the betting market to bring you even better football tips and predictions!

Our first point of call was to look at the Premier League last season. Generally speaking, the aspect of luck in football should even itself out over time. The cream always rises to the top, after all. However, 38 games sometimes just isn’t enough, so we used the data to put together an alternative Premier League table based on expected goals and expected points.

Who were the lucky ones, and which teams were less fortunate in the long battle for position in the English top flight?

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